Jeepers Creepers 2 - A lot of horror movies have interesting settings: a remote cabin, an abandoned mine, a shopping center. This one has a bus. It's not the most promising of plots - a group of high school students is riding back from the Big Game. So, there's cheerleaders and some unwitting adults to be summarily chopped up. I didn't like the first one, and the sequel has fallen prey to a horror-movie problem. They are in LOVE with their lead monster. So, much like Aliens of Freddy Kruger, a lot of the movie deals with explaining the physiology and powers of the creature. Which is fascinating is you're a Fangoria reader, but not so much for us adults. There's some fleeting homosexuality here, but not so much that you'd notice. ½ (out of 5)

The Hulk - Oh no. *Now* we're scraping the bottom of the barrel. Has Ang Lee ever *read* a comic book? We can tell by his awful movie "Ride With The Devil" that he knows nothing about the US Civil War. He fakes it here as well, using odd comic-book touches that seem really out of date and plainly BAD. Other filmmakers have turned comics into a visual flair. Heck, most storyboards I've seen outrank this movie. I hated the leading man, hated his love interest, and hated the bad CGI. Now, the Hulk has never been one of my favorite superheroes. I'm not sure I like *any* superheroes, but the Hulk wouldn't be one of them. Maybe Galactus and the Silver Surfer are ok. But I wouldn't want to watch a movie about them either. ½ (out of 5)

Snow Dogs - "Who let the dogs out?" Who keeps giving Cuba Gooding Jr. movie roles? I gave this movie some leeway... it's always fun to see a little-known sport get a full-screen treatment (like Curling, or women's surfing). However, the entire thing is flat here: we don't care about the Big Race, nor does Cuba's search for his parents ring true at all. The clips I saw of talking dogs is mercifully short, although I couldn't help thinking that if the dogs *did* talk throughout the movie, at least they would add a little surreal interest. But we get James Coburn, we get Sisqó, and we get a whole little of nothin'. ½ (out of 5)

Dancing At Lughnasa - Maybe I should have paid more attention to this movie. It's rare to see a good ensemble movie made up primarily of women. However, the story just didn't capture me. Sure, Meryl Streep was wonderful, and quite funny at times. But it wasn't enough. ½ (out of 5)

Little Voice - Not as good as I expected... though the singing was incredible. Great acting, though overall the movie was painful to watch. Great understated performance by Ewan MacGregor. Great overstated performance by Michael Caine. ½ (out of 5)

Wing Commander - I'm sorry, I wasn't paying attention while this movie was on. Could you should it again? On the other hand, please don't. It had something to do with the "kilrathi", a badly-costumed cat-like alien species that even the old Star Trek wouldn't have stooped to show. The special effect were sub-Amiga-Babylon-5, the acting was slow, and the movie wasn't fun or funny. Luckily, my friend was watching the movie while I wasn't, and would tell me periodically what was going on. So, it was like watching someone play a computer game and watching over their shoulder to see how they are doing. The good guys win in the end with a high score. ½ (out of 5)

8mm - A great premise: a rich widow opens up the private safe of her late husband and finds a snuff tape. She hires the moody over-acting Nicholas Cage to find out what the video tape is all about. However, from then on its all downhill. The movie tries to titillate with corny stereotypes of the sex industry (why would a famous porno director's office be dimly lit and dusty?) In the end, the movie becomes what it pretends to dislike... a violent, pointless film with a lack of moral structure. Awful. ½ (out of 5)

Runaway Bride - I hated "Pretty Woman". I didn't see how anybody could like the contrived love story about a whore and a john. I real life, Julia Roberts would have been a crack-addicted half-corpse, and Richard Gere would have been in jail. To rekindle some of the "magic" of that movie, some movie studio decided to recast both of them is a distasteful, nasty movie where neither of them is likable at all. He is a mean cruel liar, and she is a rabid bitch. Sounds like romantic bliss, doesn't it? Richard Gere's hair is terrible through the whole movie, and the Nora Ephrom homey "Wonderful Life" small-town details don't work at all. Whoever made this movie must have really hated women. ½ (out of 5)

Trick - At first, I was hoping that this movie would show a side of gay life that isn't usually seen in movies... kind of like a comedy version of "Meeting Mr. Goodbar" meets "Cruising". However, after a few jokes about go-go boys and one night stands, this movie reveals that it's all about love. And not the kind of dirty Barry White loooooove, but it presupposes that gay mean really want to find somebody to settle down with. The all want a permanent boyfriend, just like straight people. I was hoping for a more realistic cynical approach to gay life. Aside from a bitter drag queen, this movie doesn't take any cheap shots at anybody (except maybe Tori Spelling, who is rancid here), as as such, it's not very funny, either. Ah, when will they make a good gay comedy? "The Opposite of Sex" may be the closest so far. *** (out of 5)

The Astronaut's Wife - I think there's some sort of clause in John (don't call him Johnny) Depp's contract that says for every interesting idiosyncratic movie his makes (Sleepy Hollow, Ed Wood, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas) he has to make an incredibly bland flick. Like "Nick of Time", this movie never should have been made. Johnny Depp has an uneven Southern accent, and the movie is filled with unnecessary visual effects. It's as if "Rosemary's Baby" had 3D CGI graphics. In one scene Depp and Charlize Theron have sex against a wall, only to have the camera turn and all of a sudden they have morphed into lying on a bed. I bet it cost thousands in computer time for them to have sex that way. But it's really Theron's movie, and she mopes for hours in a pregnant funk. Depp never is freaky enough, and the whole movie limps towards the end without reaching a climax (unlike Theron and Depp). ½ (out of 5)

Anywhere But Here - I've never liked semi-autobiographical movies. They are too much like real life (uh, that's a joke). Life is too messy, filled with useless twists and turns that go nowhere. This is one of thousands of movies where a family moves to L.A. to become rich, only to strike out ("The Slums of Beverly Hills", "Addams Family 2"). I don't know why hollywood thinks that the rest of America is fascinated with their town. If anything, these movies serve as a big warning sign that L.A. is filled with losers, con artists, and really, really boring filmmakers. ½ (out of 5)

The Bachelor - Sometimes it's fun to be gay because I can feel superior to the straight people in the world. Whenever I see a "swinger's party" or LoDo (lower Denver) meat market full of too-tanned drunk frat boys trying to hook up, it makes me feel like gay people aren't the weird ones in the world. I'm mad at "Who Wants To Marry a Millionaire", Rick Rockwell and Darva Conger, for cheapening the idea of marriage. I'm mad at the thousands of straight couples in America that marry too easily and divorce too quickly. And I'm mad at this movie. I would *love* to marry the great guy I've been living with for the last six years. I would fight for it, pay money to causes, write letters, and even get arrested in a protest. Instead, "The Bachelor" makes it sound like marriage is a living hell. Women are compared to "sweetgrass" within the first five minutes, and things go down from there. And guys don't get off easy either. I don't know how, but they've managed to turn cute likeable Chris O'Donnell (heck, I'd marry him) into a lying despicable lying loser. Tough trick. Strangely enough, all the part are there... acting, odd incidental characters, and great editing. But this movie seems to come out of some bizarre Hollywood world where women quit their jobs to put on a wedding dress and chase O'Donnell down the street. I remember thinking ten or twelve times about the plot, "No, that wouldn't happen, that's totally unrealistic and insulting". I'd be surprised if O'Donnell is ever in another movie after this. All those "background artist" extras in wedding dresses should be ashamed of being in this movie, too. ½ (out of 5)

Jakob the Liar - I'm amazed that a politically correct movie could be this offensive. This is really really long, although it's under two hours. It's just feels a *lot* longer. C'mon it's no Schindler's List. It's not even a Mrs. Doubtfire. My guess is that Robin Williams wants to be a serious actor, so he has stopped being funny. But what a long line of stinkers he's been in lately: Jack, The Bicentennial Man, Toys, even in Dead Poets Society (which I didn't like), Williams was not funny at all. He's a shell of a comedian, and not a very good actor. Kudos goes to Liev Schreiber and Alan Arkin, who kind of interfere with William's character as the plot's antagonists. I say "kind of" because the plot is so ham-handed and Williams is so pissy and unfriendly here it's like the screenwriters are trying to hammer home a moral that jerks can be heroes, too. But it comes out as the first unintentional Auschwitz comedy. ½ (out of 5)

The Ninth Gate - I'm a fan of Arturo Perez-Reverte, the mystery author who wrote "The Club Dumas"... the book this movie is based on. However, the book was a delightful highbrow story much like the works of Umberto Eco. There was a subplot about people who collect adolescent "serial" novels that worked its way into the plot, so that the reader was never sure whether to take the main story seriously. Satanists? Beautiful female angels? Too bad that Roman Polanski threw out all that stuff, so he was left with a silly, meaningless film. The scene with Johnny Depp in black robes is one of the worst since Polanski's own "Rosemary's Baby". The satansists should sue. This movie gets a low review, but it's given in a very loving way, like how "Showgirls" is so bad I love to watch it. ("Watch out for the maaaaaarbles!") I'll wait until Terry Gilliam directs Depp in a *better* movie (the upcoming "The Man WhoKilled  Don Quixote"). ½ (out of 5)

Celebrity - This could have been a great Woody Allen movie... if Woody Allen had been in it. Instead, Kenneth Branaugh is doing a Woody Allen *impression* (!) down to the stammering and sexual neurosis. Whose idea was this? Did Allen think that he would look ridiculous coming onto Winona Rider? Ok, ok, he would have been right about that, but that movie doesn't work. Judy Davis is just as bad as the female counterpart... ranting and confused. Why is parody so hard to do? Both Hollywood and New York City are self-conscious and silly. But showing dumb people on the screen is useless... the best parody has us caring about those characters (like "L.A. Story" and "The Big Picture"... two of my favorites). Leonardo DiCaprio is great as a spoiled film star, but then again, he's probably not reaching here. Woody Allen does try to reach outside his grasp, and it's a bland, idiotic movie. ½ (out of 5)

Pitch Black - Who died and made Vin Diesel a star? Easy question... he himself did. Or at least he acts like a corpse. After producing several "indie" vanity films, Vin has convinced some gullible Hollywood producer that he's a leading man. And that the problem with this film. Vin mumbles his way through this film so much that I turned the subtitles on my DVD. Note: a one-liner loses its impact if the audience can't understand it. Worse, this movie betrays its own inner logic: at first, the evil Martian creatures can live in caves and scurry about killing people in broad daylight (or thanks to the sloppy over-saturated technique the director used to cover up the cloudy Australian set... maybe it should be BLEACHED daylight). Then later, the bugs can't even approach a raver's glowstick without burning up. The last half of the movie drags, as they drag things across the not-so-dark desert. Maybe this movie would have been better if they wouldn't have used any lights and truly filmed it in the pitch dark. Then I wouldn't have had to see Vin Diesel preening and slouching. ½... just because I hate Vin Diesel so much (out of 5)

Jack Frost - This is what a heartwarming movie would look like if made by a person with no heart. I knew this one would be trouble, so I didn't really watch it except out of the corner of my eye while reading a book. The snowboarding in the middle caught my attention, though it had a really ancient bluescreen effect that was really, really badly done. But overall, the rest of the movie is dreck. It takes place in "Medford, Colorado", a ficticious name that I'm worried was chosen to invoke "Bedford Falls", in the classic movie "It's a Wonderful Life". I hated Michael Keaton's hair, and his singing (or low grunting) was the worst faux-blues since Bruce Willis. The family interaction at the beginning is dreadful (as is the "reunion" at the end), and the director should have known better than to handle a father's death so miserably (note to Disney: stop it with the dead parents as a plot device already! Unless you're filming the Menendez brothers' story). And I don't care about punk rockers selling out, but Henry Rollins looks absolutely rivited (as opposed to riviting) as the hockey coach for the "other" team. But the worst culprit is the bad animatronic snowman. Industrial Light an Magic should know better than this. There was one really bad Christmas movie in the 80's where the reindeer looked like a "taxidermist's delight", but the creepy snowman here is worse. The wide alien-eyes and Keaton's disembodied voice makes this a very scary XMas film, indeed. ½ (out of 5)

Dr. T and the Women - Shelley Long is in this movie? Why wasn't there a warning? You know, like on cigarette packs, "Caution: this movie contains Shelley Long". Man, I hate her. I hated Kirstie Alley and Ted Danson, too, but nobody on "Cheers" turned my stomach as much as Long. She's really annoying in this movie - what else did you expect? Even though this is a "chick flick", I can't imagine any women enjoying it unless they really hated themselves. Instead, the story centers around Richard Gere and the women in his life that torment him. The moral at the end of the story? Women really suck and they're all insane. What a "feel good" movie. I haven't seen an ending this morally corrupt and unfunny since "Very Bad Things". The plot is ridiculous... the wedding in the rain reminded me of the baseball players inexplicably finishing the ninth inning in a thunderstorm in "The Fan". Who comes up with this stuff? Gere is a terrible doctor, walking out on patients to go play golf, and acting like a dull cow. Why would the women of Dallas go to him at all? Even though I don't condone violence against women, I wanted all the women in the "bridal shower" scene to die a horrible, painful death. The opening scene with women talking, talking, talking on top of each other in a gynecologist's office has to be the most unpleasant start to a movie ever. ½ (out of 5)

Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 - Let me get this straight. There's no book in the entire movie. Ok, I can deal with that. But worse, they took everything that was good about the first movie and removed it. The acting-by-untrained-actors, the suspension of disbelief, the innovative storyline, and revolutionary use of hand-held cameras. The sequel has only one fun trick: there's hidden ghosts and photos in the background of many shots, kind of like Brad Pitt appearing in single frames of "Fight Club". It ensures that many people will buy the DVD and CD deluxe combo package. Hell, I might even watch it again, but only if I can find a fun list of thing to look for. Watching the VHS backwards told me to look for a "Door, Mirror, Grave, and Water". Thanks, guys. I might even watch the DVD with the sound turned all the way down. A year ago, I was thinking how I would make the sequel if I was the director. I didn't have any idea how you could film a sequel. I guess the producers and director of this movie felt the same way. ½ (out of 5)

Unbreakable - Half a star. One-half of one. And I really like the director, M. Night Shyamalan. Mr. M. please look on this review as a labor of love. "Unbreakable" is your "Mallrats", and like Kevin Smith, this is your sophomore attempt, and maybe you were high on the praise and promise that any hot new director gets. But, like Smith, it's no excuse to go off on a pet project about comic books. I like comic books a lot, and I don't really care to see movies about them. Your style is slow, and I can't fault you for that - I knew that before I went in. But while that effect worked great in Atom Egoyan's "The Sweet Hereafter" for example, it doesn't work for an action flick. You should have played this movie as more of an O Henry short story or a classic Bradbury tale. I've been waiting for a storyteller who will feel free to take the audience along for a ride. But I didn't want to watch Bruce Willis lift weights (slowly) for ten minutes. There's a scene where Willis's son pours orange juice for a full sixty seconds. It's not about editing, though this movie could use a lot more of that. It's about caring enough to tell an interesting story, and I know you've got several stories left in you. So, maybe next time? ½ (out of 5)

The Closet - This is a "cute" movie, much like the recent "Legally Blonde", but it gets a much lesser score. Neither movie is particularly funny, and I don't remember laughing once at either of them. Furthermore, both movies filled two hours of my life that needed filling, and I certainly wasn't annoyed by them. Oops, maybe I'll change that answer. "The Closet" is extremely distasteful... as if it was directed by straight people with no sense of gay life or culture. The only truly gay man in this movie is a harmless older man, definitely non-sexual and non-threatening. Still, the gay man mentions his homosexuality with down turned eyes and a rueful voice. Even the gay pride parade featured in the movie doesn't look like fun (now *how* did they do that?) This is a bizarre Straight World where claiming you are gay gets you beaten up and promoted in the same week. Gérard Depardieu, in particular is unbelievable, a rugby-coaching homophobe who turns gay in an embarrassing (for the audience and for the actor) scene. Then, having become gay, Depardieu in committed to an insane asylum. The French suck. ½ (out of 5)

Armageddon - I like action movies. I like miners. I like Ben Affleck, Bruce Willis, and Liv Tyler. I liked the disaster movies that all showed up before the year 2000, perhaps as a response to the "pre-millennium tension" of the times. However, I couldn't stomach this movie. The plot holes were so big, you could fly a spaceship between them (and they did, in one scene). A shootout on an explosive oil rig over a daughter's virginity? A ragtag team of roughnecks as the earth's only hope? Jumpjets on an asteroid (which should really have *no* gravity to speak of? This movie has 'em all... a real space opera because it's in space, and even if there's no singin' there's a lot of moaning and cryin'. This movie was just too *loud* and convinced that it was entertaining. It's all director Michael Bay's fault; the next movie he made was "Pearl Harbor", which had the same bombastic faults (and the same bombs). This is the kind of film that makes me cringe when summer comes around and the kids get out of school. By showing this movie, we really *are* creating a nation of patriotic idiots. ½ (out of 5)

Mercury Rising - It's Bruce Willis again! I guess he chooses movie roles by the size of the paycheck they would pay him in return for his "acting". Was there ever a time when he looked like he had talent? Maybe in the "Moonlighting" days when the writers were covering for him. Out in the cold dark world without a plot, he really looks hollow. And it doesn't get more silly that this plot: the CIA puts a secret code in a grocery-store puzzle book (!) and an autistic child is the only one who knows the secret. It's really callous to make a harmless child a MacGuffin who is carried around like a doll by Willis out of (and into) danger. I mean, soon they'll make a movie where a DOG is the only thing that can SAVE THE WORLD, and some action hero will have to come in, guns a-blazin', and protect the dog. Meanwhile, all the theatergoers will cringe, because... who wants to see a puppy ventilated? Even the most hard-core horror jocks would cry at a dead puppy. Well, in this case it's a helpless autistic boy. Maybe it's ok if *people* die unnecessarily, but if you take away the sad manipulative parts of this move, there's nothing left at all. ½ (out of 5)

Freddy Got Fingered - I was looking forward to this movie because it got such bad reviews. One reviewer called it "anti-entertainment". "Battlefield Earth" got bad reviews, too, and I found out that it deserved every one of them. But this movie is different. Tom Green doesn't really have a *hatred* for his audience, the way that contemptuous rock stars do. Instead, I think he thinks that his geek show is interesting, novel, or fun to watch. He has a point - his tv show skyrockets him to a strange kind of Jerry Springer fame, and there were some genuinely funny moments (aka "The Bum Bum Song"). However, this movie is strung together with the worst bits of his "comedy", and there's nobody driving the bus. There's some bizarre scenes, as when Rip Torn shows his wife his teeth for no apparent reason or plot. It's painful to watch... but Green intends it that way. At the end of the movie, there's some outtakes where Green and his "wife", Drew Barrymore crack themselves up by making screaming noises. Well, I'm glad they had fun. The rest of us would be screaming if we weren't asleep. ½ (out of 5)

Coyote Ugly - I would never set foot in this bar. It looks like a vision of hell to me: big-breasted whores spill drinks on the customers, shake their silicone while dancing on top of the bar, and act generally rude and boorish. The funny thing is: the movie shows *women* in the bar, too, and in one scene, bid on the affection of a man-whore who is trying to date the lead "actress". Now, we all know there wouldn't be straight women in the place, unless they were trying to suck up and be "one of the boys" to get a job promotion. At first, I kind of liked the scenes that took place *outside* of the bar, but then I realized that every plot point was telegraphed years in advance. Will the heroine get fired for bringing her boyfriend into the bar? Will she achieve her dream? Will she fall in love with the Australian man-whore? If you are still guessing... here's another question for you: have you *never* seen a Hollywood movie? There's some really odd odd moments in this film. Really inexplicable. First, the lead tart's music is so incredibly bad. Second, they drag out country whore Leanne Rimes to sing that same terrible music. Third, if the movie is an accurate depiction of an actual bar in New York City, why hasn't somebody blown it up yet? ½ (out of 5)

Scary Movie 2 - Oh god, maybe I should just stop going to movies that everybody else finds funny. Maybe my sense of humor is underdeveloped, or too highly developed, or ruined by too many british television marathons on the BBC channel. Whatever it is, I didn't find *anything* in this movie funny. I especially hated the endless vomit and piss jokes, and anything involving James Woods. The fight scenes in the middle are even worse. Adding to the endless parodies of "Matrix"-like flying kicks has to be the stalest joke since "Blair Witch" references. Oh wait, the only joke older would be to add an unrelated ten minutes at the beginning of the movie making fun of "The Exorcist". Yeah, I know they re-released it, but the movie is 28 years old. Even Johnny Carson has made all those jokes long before the Wayans touched them. The only thing worse was "reminiscing" about the movie two years from now with humor-challenged cow-irkers who try to repeat all the "humorous" parts for overall office merriment. God, I hate those people who quote movie lines that aren't funny. ½ (out of 5)

Vampire Princess Miyu - What came first, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, or this movie. Knowing how Disney has ripped off old Japanese anime (Kimba the White lion, anyone?) I wouldn’t be surprised if this series came first. It’s not really fair to Buffy, since that show is actually pretty good (and getting raves from adult fans lately, too), but Miyu takes a different take. Sure, the episodes are only thirty minutes long, but most of them veer off into interesting, odd directions where I couldn’t initially guess who was going to be a bad guy or a good guy. There’s lots of creepy Japanese teen-girl panty pedophilia, and some violence, but it’s worth it to see what cartoons would look like if they were made for adults. **** (out of 5)

Pootie Tang - The "hook" to this movie is that it’s a black superhero who speaks in nonsense gibberish like "tippy tai" or "sine your pitty on the runny kine". That’s about it. There’s no jokes. I expected more from Chris Rock, whose HBO shows were actually very good. Female comedian Jennifer Coolidge is here, too in a somewhat funny character as a hooker-who-really-isn’t-a-hooker. Urban life, folks. I think the explanation is that this movie was written and directed by a WHITE GUY, who isn’t in the movie, and has no real connection to the MC Hammer wanna-be Lance Crouther... one of the least charismatic actors I’ve seen in a long time. Putting all of this together gives an awful stench of the worst Uncle Tom blaxploitation in years. It’s like a white ivy leaguer being exposed to MTV-style ebonics ("biziness on the skizit") and thinking that it would be funny to copy it poorly. I watched this one with the English-language captions on, which made it funnier, since the transparent dialogue turned opaque, as the plot was laboriously hammered out by a mealy-mouthed cast. It’s sad with the subtitles are the only professional part of a movie. ½ (out of 5)

Collateral Damage - I find it hilarious that this movie was pulled right after 9/11 by the studio. Were they afraid that the families of 9/11 victims were going to fly over to Afghanistan and pursue the same kind of vigilante justice that Schwarzenegger does here? I'm sure those amateurs couldn't do any worse than Rumsfeld and Bush have done at trying find Bin Laden or weapons of mass destruction. If anything, the studio should have pumped this film as the fell good hit of the disaster. The whole idea, from a fireman going to Columbia, to the Central American stereotypes, and altogether too silly, and I have a hard time thinking that releasing this film on time would have hurt anybody's feelings. It's a sad mess, much like our recent war in the Iraq, so everything fits together nicely. ½ (out of 5)

Reign of Fire - I like dragons, so I expected to enjoy this little flick. I mean I like dragons as much as anything else medieval-looking. I don't mean that I have them hanging all over my house, on paintings, and as stuffed animals like a freak (ok, ok, I have *one* stuffed dragon, I admit it, now leave me alone). And I like Matthew McConehey, so this seemed like a slam dunk. But the fatal flaw in my ointment is the fact that they set this movie in an odd unidentifiable (and unrealistic) apocalyptic future. Instead of the darker version of "Dragonheart Part 3" that I was expecting, I got a bad Mad Max clone where the scruffy band of misfits has to kill a single dragon in CGI London. Egads! ½ (out of 5)

Fear Dot Com - Check out the name. That's your first clue at how bad this movie is. They couldn't get the rights to (it's a really good "community" arty web page... check it out), so they decided against changing the name of their movie, and went with "". Dot com dot com? Anyway, I *had* to take a look at the web site (and I'm still alive days later). It's the best part of the movie. I was amazingly disappointed with the bad flash animations and the overall lack of content. I was disappointed in the whole movie, too. It's a ripoff of "The Ring" (which itself was a remake of the Japanese "Ringu"), and even though I consider myself to be pretty sharp, I couldn't figure out (or care about) the plot. Evidently, you die from what you're most scared of: drowning, bugs, or trains. However, I couldn't figure out what Stephen Dorff was supposed to be scared of. Dominatrices? Village-of-the-damned little girls? White rubber balls? Bad dialogue? Cheesy nine inch nails graphics? Pointless internet-themed movies? ½ (out of 5)

Lisa Picard is Famous - I thought Griffin Dunne was funny. At least he was in "After Hours". However, I now realize it was Martin Scorsese that made that movie great. Dunne can't really direct or write, and it's painfully obvious here. It's a mean satire about the quest for fame, and instead of digging unfunny bad scenes out of the actors he makes fun of, he should have just made a straight documentary pieced together from the cameos he gets from his celebrity friends. I'd see Carrie Fisher talk on stage for two hours (or Spike Lee, Charlie Sheen, or Sandra Bullock, Buck Henry, or any of the other guest stars Dunne roped into appearing in this movie). However, I won't willing see a Dunne-directed movie ever again. ½ (out of 5)

Darkness Falls - Oh, I got burned on this one. I don't care that the rental was free... I want those two hours of my life back. This one's a stinker, and I don't think they come any worse. Here's the entire movie: the tooth fairy kills children. While this would be an interesting hook, they don't play it out. No fun scenes of a tooth getting yanked out, just a flying witch who's killed by bright light. When the protagonists hide in a lighthouse, and idea what happens? It's too bad, since the tooth fairy can be downright frightening. It's a supernatural creature who hungers for human bone. But this movie made her seem like the Easter Bunny (who has dark egg-stealing secrets of his own, no doubt). ½ (out of 5)

Final Destination 2 - I kind of liked the first one. Isn't that lukewarm praise? This summer, that phrase has been applied to everything from "Star Wars" to "Charlie's Angels". We *kinda* liked the first one, so why not go see a sequel? Well, here's the reason. The movie starts out rather cute. it knows that YOU know what's coming, so it puts a carload of kids in danger. You know that they will crash - or rather *not* crash, and then be picked off one by one later. Unfortunately, that's the only trick in effect here, and after the third time the current victim escapes obvious death (not being mangled by a garbage disposal or a dentist's drill) only to die unexpectedly (by a falling sheet of glass or a fire escape ladder) it really gets tiring. The ladder in particular is incredible gross, but also really unlikely. I loved the TV news reporting on a guy dying from being hit by a ladder - yeah, I see that on CNN all the time. The movie invents too many new rules: you can escape the curse if people die out of order, or maybe if they die in the reverse order, or maybe if a baby is born at the right time, or... I hope there' no third movie here. They should take a lesson from "Urban Legend" that when a series is out of gas, it's really out of gas. ½ (out of 5)

They - So I want to know how this works. Does Wes Craven just contribute his name to any crap horror film in return for a slice of the profits? Or did he actually have any creative input on this? I have a hard time believing that, since this film is devoid of any creativity. I don't mean to spoil anything, but the "deleted scenes" suggest that they seriously considered to make the entire movie a dream sequence of an inmate in an insane asylum. I'm glad they didn't do that, because I would have throw my DVD player across the room. I hate that cop out, it's like tell me, "Don't pay any attention to the last two hours of the movie you just watched... it was all bullshit". The worst part is that a dream sequence would have made sense of all the unrelated parts of the film. Instead, the "real" ending is an unfinished mess much like "Signs". ½ (out of 5)

Gods and Generals - As I continually tell my friends, I was in the Ted Turner movie "Gettsyburg" as an extra. Or, as they say in the industry, a "background artist". In any effect, I was an unemployed college student crashing in a tent and getting to dress up and play civil war soldier on a movie set at the Gettysburg battleground for a month or so. So, I have a soft spot in my heart for movies like this. "Gods and Generals" is kind of a prequel to "Gettysburg" but Michael Shaara's less talented son Jeff. Ted Turner loves period war films, and it shows. Nobody would spend this much money on a historical film unless they loved it - because this series isn't very good. I think director Ron Maxwell is a hack (and I met him), and this movie is a long insufferable mess to sit through. Of course, I had to buy the DVD, but jsut to see if anybody I knew was in the scenes in the background. ½ (out of 5)

Boat Trip - Black people have their "Bringing Down the House" (see above), and now gay people have an embarrassing stereotypical movie that does nothing. It doesn't amuse or entertain, and it doesn't even have the balls to offend properly. Maybe the limp homosexual plot and the sloppily drawn characters would have worked in the seventies, in a "Gay Deceivers" sort of way. But today, people *know* gay people aren't like this. The movie has all the clichés... from the drag scene to the gay-man-teaches-straight-man-about-being-a-woman scene, to the unclimatic left-at-the-altar scene. Easily one of the worst of the year. I can't believe Cuba Gooding Jr. would do this crap after winning an Oscar. Oh wait a minute, I guess I would. ½ (out of 5)

Dreamcatcher - Oh Stephen King. Sometimes, I wish that truck would have killed you and then you'd only write nightmares. Instead, you come out with crap like this. There's three entire movies here - one about aliens, one about an epidemic, and one about psychic powers. It also has some of the worst acting (or is it the dialogue) that I've ever heard in a movie. The first three minutes are excruciating. it gets worst from there, with a ridiculous ending that's only even sillier in the "alternate ending" on the DVD. My god, it was the most incompetent writing since the end of "They". The ending they chose is only slightly better. This movie is like a low-rent version of "Signs", and it's a toss-up at which one has the stupider alien plot. ½ (out of 5)

Windtalkers - I can't make fun of a movie that's so earnest. After all, Hollywood doesn't make a lot of movie where the hero is a Native American. And they don't do it here - Nicolas Cage eats up the scenery, most of the dialogue, and the running time, in order to do the same the thing that Matthew Broderick did for "Glory" or Matthew McConaughey did for "Amistad": create a white character to interact with the savages so the honky audience can relate to the plot. Here's a movie made entirely from old cliches... my favorite (or maybe *least* favorite) was the harmonica/flute duo in order to show the two races coming together as friends. Christian Slater actually says, "My daddy usta call me the pied piper of the pigs". yes, he actually does, And in the beginning, when Cage is told he must protect the code above the saftey of the Indians, was anybody surprised that he shoots one of them, causing a big rift with the surviving second banana Indian? Like "Hart's War", I wished that this movie was never made, becuase now there will never be a *good* movie made using the same source material. ½ (out of 5)